From a Start-up to SPJIMR!
So, let’s travel back in time. A usual Saturday at IIT (BHU) Varanasi. We had our last class-test the next day and not-so-usually, I was trying to mug up the ‘surveying formulae’. Now, I would like to tell you, something special about Saturdays in IIT (BHU). On Saturdays, we have our messes off, so we had to go out of the sprawling campus (approximately 16 sq. kilometers in area) to have dinner. Just imagine a scenario, where a total of 10-12 restaurants nearby cater to a crowd of about 4000 students. People used to wait outside the restaurants, so that they can get their chance when others are done with their meals. We got used to this practice. Just the day before my exam, I planned to skip the dinner as I had a lot to study and couldn’t afford wasting 2 hours to have dinner. I was wondering if someone could bring food to my room.
A SNAPSHOT OF ‘fasket.com’
Suddenly an idea struck my mind. What if someone delivers the food from the restaurant of my choice at my doorsteps? As soon as I finished my test, I started looking for such services in India. Luckily I found Foodpanda, Tastykhana and a few others. I read reviews and experts’ opinion of their services. After hours of research, I concluded that if executed properly, an online Food-Delivery portal can actually help a lot of students. Thus, an idea of a start-up was born!! I did a bit of primary research and later, convinced two of my batch mates to join me as co-founders. Kushagra was responsible for web development whereas Tushar was in-charge of strategy. I started building the team. Shivansh and Rishabh decided to take care of creative-end of the company. Amrita went on to join as the content and SEO head whereas Keote joined to reinforce the operations team. We selected fasket (abbreviation for food basket) as the name of our company. The team designed the logo, created the website and established social media presence, whereas me and Tushar forged partnerships with various restaurants.
COVERAGE IN TOI
Within a week, we were operational. Initially our services were limited to the students of IIT (BHU) only, and that too only on weekends. But after getting a colossal response, we decided to serve on all the seven days to the entire BHU crowd (20,000 students). We started hitting revenues of Rs. 1,00,000 per month and it was growing at an exponential rate. So, we hired more delivery boys and got pre-incubated at TBI, MCIIE. We also hired a manager for handling the orders. We soon got covered in The Times of India, The Indian Express, DainikBhaskar, Amar Ujala and many others. We went on adding the restaurants. In February 2014, we were awarded as one of the best 25 student startups of the nation at TATA first dot powered by NEN.
TATA ROUND TABLE STARTUPS
But, after reaching a point, I realized that we have reached a saturation level. We were not able to leverage our strengths to grow further. Then, one of my friends advised me to go for a MBA program, so that I can understand the ins and outs of the business. He told me that this course would help me to understand the business at a macro level. I gave CAT and got a meagre 91.8 percentile. All I had was a profile-based call from SPJIMR. My whole G1 interview revolved around my startup experience. Even the G2 interview revolved around my startup and thoughts I had on e-commerce industry. Luckily, I got shortlisted for the course.
Now, it has been four months here and I am happy that I took this decision of joining SPJIMR. I am simply in love with the course structure of this college. Joining SPJIMR was probably one of the best decisions of my life.
Proud to be a SPartan!
You can check out Fasket’s website: http://fasket.com/
Pankaj Agrawal is a PGDM 2015-17 student at SPJIMR, Mumbai specialising in Marketing. Connect with him on https://in.linkedin.com/in/pankajagrawal94